Transworld has announced the publication of a new book from bestselling novelist Paula Hawkins next summer – the "propulsive, twisty" thriller A Slow Fire Burning.
Publishing on 31st August 2021, A Slow Fire Burning examines "the insidious and destructive nature of past trauma" as Hawkins "deftly upturns expectations" and "demonstrates how lives can collide and ultimately how damage can lead to damage".
It is the third book from the author, whose 2015 debut thriller The Girl on the Train became one of the top five bestselling hardback novels since records began, sparking a film adaptation and selling 23 million copies worldwide in 50 countries and over 40 languages, according to the publisher. Her second novel Into the Water, published in 2017, sold four million copies worldwide.
Through Nielsen BookScan's UK Total Consumer Market Hawkins has sold 3.02 million books for £19.2m, with The Girl on the Train selling 2.5 million copies across all editions and Into the Water having shifted 507,073 copies.
Explaining the new book's premise in her own words, Hawkins said: "A Slow Fire Burning starts with a brutal murder on a London canal boat. Laura, a likely suspect, is witnessed leaving the scene and for a while it looks like a straightforward case. But what I wanted to explore in this book is the way that no tragedy happens in isolation: an accident in childhood can have ramifications a decade later; trusting the wrong person at the wrong time can derail a life completely. I am interested in the way we become the people we are: how we choose what to hold onto and how those things can wound us."
Transworld Fiction publisher Sarah Adams said: "I could not be prouder to announce the publication of A Slow Fire Burning. I adore this book, which contains everything readers could possibly want from a Paula Hawkins thriller – a dark plot that grabs you and never lets up, characters that you believe in utterly, incredible pace and knock-you-sideways twists. Paula skilfully balances delicious touches of sharp, knowing humour with deeply affecting storytelling, so that we are powerfully enthralled from first page to last gasp. This confirms Paula as one of the most exciting commercial thriller authors writing today."
Hawkins' agent Lizzy Kremer called Hawkins’ portrayal "a world in which women who refuse to meet society’s expectations are easily blamed, and in which they seek to seize back power over their own stories", adding she remained "in awe of Paula’s giant empathy for those who have suffered and her striking ability to satisfy and also to surprise her readers".
A "major" multi-media promotional campaign has been promised for A Slow Fire Burning, which will be published under the Doubleday imprint in hardback, e-book and audio on 31st August 2021.